From cleats on NFL players to KitchenAid appliances, pink is everywhere this month. October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and the Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation has been busy promoting the cause through pink partnerships with hundreds of corporations and pink ribbons everywhere. But, some argue that all the pink products have put too rosy a tone on the disease and that the foundation puts too much money into building awareness at the expense of funding medical research. Here, a brief guide by the numbers:
Amount generated by the Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation in the 2010 fiscal year. It's "a story of savvy marketing," says Natasha Singer in The New York Times. The foundation's chief executive, Nancy G. Brinker, "has rebranded an entire disease by putting an upbeat spin on fighting it."
Number of women in the U.S. that breast cancer kills annually
Number of men
Number of corporate partnerships the Komen foundation has put in place this year
Amount of revenue the foundation expects from all those partnerships
Amount Komen raised last year through a controversial cross-promotion with KFC called "Buckets for the Cure." Some criticized the fried-chicken partnership, noting that obesity can be a risk factor for breast cancer.
Amount Komen raised last year through its series of "Race for the Cure" running and walking event. Some 1.7 million attended the 147 races, and the series was Komen's biggest source of revenue
Number of breast cancer survivors who participated in a recent Dallas Cowboys halftime show, along with Cowboys cheerleaders bearing pink pompoms. The Komen association helps the Cowboys show their fans, nearly half of whom are female, that the team cares, says the Cowboys' VP of brand management, Charlotte Jones Anderson.
Percent of retail revenue from the special pink New Balance "Lace Up for the Cure Collection" that goes to the Komen foundation. New Balance is obligated to donate at least $500,000 annually
Cost of the pink New Balance 993 sneakers in the collection
Number of Old Navy stores across the country selling pink Komen logo shirts. Again, 5 percent of sales will go to Komen
Percent of breast cancer patients in 1997 who opted to have a "preventive" mastectomy and have an unaffected breast removed, according to a study at New York's Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
Percent of breast cancer patients in 2005 who opted for the procedure, according to the same study. Other studies have also found similarly dramatic increases in the rate of "preventive" mastectomies. "There is an enormous climate of fear, whether that's from Breast Cancer Awareness Month or the news media the other 12 months of the year," says Monica Morrow, a breast cancer specialist at Memorial Sloan-Kettering. "The only thing you ever hear about breast cancer is about some woman who's dying because she didn't get treated in time."
Percent chance that women with breast cancer believe they have of developing a new tumor in the unaffected breast, according to a study in this month's Annals of Surgical Oncology
Less than 7
Actual risk of a tumor developing in the opposite breast after 10 years
Amount spent by the Komen foundation in 2010 on public health education, which includes breast cancer awareness campaigns
Amount spent by the Komen foundation in 2010 to fund medical research
Amount spent by the Komen foundation in 2010 on breast cancer screening and treatment
Sources: Detroit Free Press, New Balance, New York Times
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- What is driving the increasingly weird behavior of the polar jet stream?
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- How our botched understanding of 'science' ruins everything
- Christians have no moral rationale for spanking their children
- 6 things the happiest families all have in common
- Should you hope to die at 75? Absolutely not.
- The science of sex: 4 harsh truths about dating and mating
- 13 Urban Outfitters controversies
- Why America should team up with Bashar al-Assad's regime
Subscribe to the Week